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Birdseye view of Oxford painted from hot air balloon to go on sale

21/01/2016 Jo Bailey Hot Air Balloon News

henry williams painting

Taking a hot air balloon ride in Bath, Taunton or Oxford is not uncommon, but painter Henry Williams was unusual in that he used a hot air balloon ride over Oxford to help him create an artwork of the city, and the resulting painting is set to go on sale this January.

The bird’s eye view of Oxford, which was painted using a hot air balloon, has been valued by Charterhouse valuer George Holtby, as being worth between £500-1000.

The painting, which was created at the end of the 19th century, is set to go under the hammer in Sherborne along with a multitude of other pictures, which will be sold at the Charterhouse auction on Friday 22nd January.

Speaking about the painting to The Western Gazette, valuer George Holtby said:

“It’s a charming picture of Oxford by William Brewer painted in 1893, with a view looking from Magdalen Bridge. Unusually for an artist, he went up in balloons to enable him to take a birds-eye view over his subject which was a novel way of taking a perspective. I guess today he would simply put a camera on a drone.”

William Henry Brewer was an Oxford painter born in the city in 1836. For most of his working life, he painted churches and architectural interiors in London, and regularly exhibited his works at The Royal Academy.

His bird’s eye view painting of Oxford is currently owned by a family with academic roots in Oxford, who have decided that it is time for someone else to enjoy the unique picture.

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